By Collin Gallant
Southern Alberta Newspapers
The first edition to a planned highway commercial strip on the eastern edge of Dunmore is up and operating as Cypress County considers plans for major commercial development.
The UFA cardlock first proposed in early 2022 opened in late November and is now serving customers, according to the rural supply and fuel co-operative retailer.
Construction to extend a highway service road to the junction with Township Road 120 is underway and moving east.
“It’s very accessible and highly visible for travellers heading along that corridor,” UFA officials told Southern Alberta Newspapers on Nov. 30. The larger facility has wider and more lanes compared to its previous location near Highway 3 in the Hat and “will also offer enhanced bulk delivery service to the area, meaning bulk fuel can be delivered faster to rural members and customers.”
The company’s supply yard and farm and ranch store on 30th Avenue, south of the Medicine Hat Regional Airport, will remain open. A grand opening at the Dunmore location is planned for the spring.
For several years, Cypress County council and officials have planned the general area as a highway commercial development to mimic “Gasoline Alley” on the south side of Red Deer on Highway 2.
The “Dunmore Junction” area plan was adopted in July 2022, consisting of 68 hectares of land on the southwest corner of the junction of the Trans-Canada and Highway 41 (north), which becomes Township Road 120 and loops south of the hamlet and the City of Medicine Hat to eventually join Highway 3.
The UFA sits on the southeast corner, technically out of the plan boundaries, but in a cul-de-sac of commercial lots,
Cypress County council is still considering a final go-ahead on the larger development, according to county officials. It would mix highway commercial land with light industrial zoning and 20 residential lots on the other side of a greenspace.
The service road extension is underway in part to relieve congestion at the controlled intersection at the Trans-Canada and Eagle Butte Road.
“We are very grateful to both the communities of Medicine Hat and Dunmore, who have been extremely supportive in this project,” said Doug Charriere, UFA’s director of petroleum operations. “As a co-operative, UFA is built on giving back to the communities we serve, and we look forward to being part of and giving back to Dunmore and continuing to support the community of Medicine Hat.”
UFA is in the midst of a multi-year major expansion of fuel offerings, and now has five locations in Saskatchewan. The retail co-operative that began as the United Farmers of Alberta, has more than 100 locations in this province, plus locations in Swift Current, Kindersley, Weyburn, Yorktown and near Saskatoon.